20 April 2023

Everything we know about Sydney Sweeney’s upcoming whistleblower movie, ‘Reality’

Critics rave about the new lead role Sweeney has taken on, as she stars as an imprisoned woman who leaked confidential details during the 2016 election.

The Euphoria star Sydney Sweeney has wowed critics in her latest film: Reality. Since her performance as Cassie, many have coined her as a star on the rise and her time has now come to harness her talents for the big screen. Premiering at the Berlinale in February, there has been a buzz around the performance, so much so that HBO has now picked it up for release.

So what is the new film all about? Reality, as the name would suggest, is based on a true story about Reality Winner who was a woman leaking details of Russian interference in the 2016 election to the US government. What was so special about her is she was eventually arrested and sentenced to five years and three months in prison, which is the longest someone has ever spent in prison for leaking unauthorised documents. 

Sweeney will play the role of Winner, and will act within the four walls of the character’s home where she returns to find the FBI agents who have searched her belongings. In preparation for her role, Sweeney went and spoke to Winner who was released from prison in 2021. 

At a conference for the film, Sweeney said: “I was able to Zoom with her… I would text her throughout the process.” With Tina Satter’s directorial debut, the script has been built around the real transcripts during Winner’s questioning. “When Tina [Satter] connected us, I was like, ‘Oh my god, this is a dream for an actor because I’m actually getting to speak with the real person and dive into their mind and what she’s gone through in her life.’”

HBO has now released a one-minute preview where a close-up of Sweeney as Winner is shown as her possessions get searched. A picture flashes up of Sweeney in military uniform, the same as an image of Winner, as a voice says, “Telling a lie to an FBI agent… is not going to be the right thing.” Reviews from its premier were extremely impressed, with many singling out Sweeney’s performance. “Ultimately, it’s Sweeney’s show,” says The Playlist, and nearly unanimously the reviews agree. Thankfully, we can all catch Sweeney’s performance on HBO Max on the 29th of May, as we may be seeing the start of her career on the big screen coming faster than expected. 

  • Writer Ella Chadwick Banner Image Credit

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